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Lesson 3 Revelation 2:12-17

Lesson 3 Revelation 2:12-17
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A Spiritual Interpretation of Revelation

As taught by:
Unity School for Religious Studies
Unity Village, MO 64065

Lesson Outline

  1. Metaphysical meaning of the church of Pergamum.
  2. Praise for the church.
  3. Criticism for the church.
  4. Promise of reward for overcoming that which is criticized.
  1. Rev. 2:12-2:17
  2. Metaphysical Bible Dictionary: "Pergamum-"
  3. Be Ye Transformed 211, 212
  1. Metaphysically, what does the church of Pergamum stand for in human nature?
  2. Give a general summary of praise given to the church.
  3. Give a general summary of criticism given to the church.
  4. Give a general summary of the reward for overcoming to be given

Lesson Text


Pergamum means "strongly united; closely knit." The Metaphysical Bible Dictionary gives the metaphysical meaning of the church of Pergamum as "intellectual nature." More specifically, it stands for the cooperation of our intellect in the whole process of spiritual unfoldment.

Rev. 2:13 "'I know where you dwell, where Satan's throne is; you hold fast my name and you did not deny my faith. ...'"

This is praise given to our intellect. Our intellect is "holding fast" to our commitment to Spirit even though "Satan's throne" is located within it. Satan is the biblical symbol of negative thinking and erroneous beliefs. Satan's throne represents that matrix for all human error and negativity. It is located in the human intellect. The Christ Mind praises our intellect for "holding fast" in spite of the fact that so much negativity and error are going on within it!

When we consider that "Satan's throne" is right within our intellect at this time, we cannot help but wonder how we have managed to keep ourselves as faithful and loyal to Truth as we have.

But praiseworthy as it is, our intellect is in need of further improvement when it comes to cooperating with the process of spiritual unfoldment.

Rev. 2:14 "'But I have a few things against you: you have some there who hold the teaching of Balaam... eat food sacrificed to idols and practice immorality.'"

These things mentioned are symbolic references to very common faults and shortcomings still active in the intellects of human beings who are otherwise committed to Spirit and to Truth. It is not necessary to be too specific about what these errors actually are, but in general they are:

  1. Superstitious and negative types of religious thinking.
  2. Materialistic greed and worship of personalities.
  3. Connecting our sense of I Am to negative emotions.

Rev. 2:17 "'He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who conquers I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone which no one knows except him who receives it.'"

First, how do we overcome and correct the faults and shortcomings in our intellectual nature where spiritual unfoldment is concerned? Nothing is more helpful than the Unity method of correct use of denial and affirmation. The intellect is thus being trained to "feed" on divine ideas instead of "food sacrificed to idols." This also trains our intellect to connect our sense of I AM only to divine ideas instead of erroneous beliefs and negative emotions. Charles Fillmore taught that the correct use of denial and affirmation would eventually "spiritualize the whole intellect."

The first part of the reward promised for this particular overcoming is: "I will give some of the hidden manna." - This refers to the discovery of an entirely new source of energy and nourishment. This source is not a visible, tangible "something" out in the world. It is a "hidden" source, which means that it is within. It is simply the higher levels of our own being.

The nourishment derived from these higher levels of being within us is more than physical. It nourishes the soul first, then the body. It benefits the whole man. There is no waste matter; nothing needs to be eliminated following its assimilation by us. In the Gospels, Jesus alludes to this very thing when He says to His disciples, "I have food to eat of which you do not know." (John 4:32) This "hidden manna" is the vital life, substance, and energy of Spirit, directly assimilated into our entire being. Other symbolic terms that refer to this are "bread from heaven," "body of Christ," "blood of Christ."

The second part of the reward promised is, "'... and I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone which no one knows except him who receives it.'" This refers to a new and higher realization of I AM. In the past, when most of us said, "I am," we were usually thinking of only our current opinions of ourselves. Greater realization of I AM is much more than an opinion of one's self, it is more of an awareness of our Real Self. Our Real Self is so much greater than any opinion we can ever have of ourself. It requires our reaching a higher level of consciousness within ourselves to even bear facing a realization of our Real Self. This is the "white stone" mentioned. In this "white stone," or purified state of consciousness, we learn our "new name," an entirely new realization of our true I AM.